1955 First Bale of Cotton

first bale
In August 1955, the Summerville Retail Merchants Association awarded Lyerly farmer Jim McDonald a hundred bucks for being the first to produce and gin a bale of cotton in Chattooga County for the year.  The 488 pound bale was brought to the courthouse by 19-year-old Fred McDonald (sitting on bale).  The president of the association, Bill Jordon, is shown on the left.  To the right is George Kling Jr. who ginned the cotton at his Menlo facility.

The bale was valued at approximately $166 (about $1,400 in today's dollars) and remained at the courthouse on display for a week.  The Summerville Retail Merchants Association used the contest to encourage agricultural development in Chattooga County.

Photograph by T. Emmett Nunn.  Information obtained from the Summerville News.

Copyright 2013 Greg W. McCollum.  All rights reserved.